Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pictures

A couple people have requested pictures. I haven't taken any myself yet, (but it's me, you know there will be tons once we move in), but these are the pictures from the realtor's website.

Living room. I wish they had picked a more neutral color for the carpet, but it's brand new, so I can live with it... The brand new kitchen. No room for a dishwasher, but it's all good. There is an apple tree right outside the kitchen window.

French doors in the living room that lead to the foyer.


Finished third floor, perfect for a playroom! I'm sure when Owen is 13, he's going to want to move up here full time. The three bedrooms on the second floor all have this carpet and paint color as well.



Dining room, leading to back yard. There is also a pass-through to the kitchen.



That's it! I will take a ton of pictures come September 25!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Update!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

He only countered by $1,000!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We got it!

The house I had a dream about.

So, I think I already mentioned that we listed our apartment with a realtor. We figured it was time to get serious, start trying to make things happen.


We were a little unsure of what we were going to do if the house sold. Do we buy a new house? Do we try to save money and rent? We even tossed around the idea of moving out of the area. But, since I have such a good job, we figured staying in Wheeling and being close to our families was the best bet for us.


We figured it would be wise to start looking at houses as well. When the time came that our house sold, we would have to decide quickly what the plan would be. If we did end up buying a house, I wanted to know what all was on the market, so we would be prepared and be familiar with all the houses in our price range.


Last week, we had looked at one house in Bethlehem that was decent, but overpriced and needed a little work. I told our realtor, Bob, (who I love), that I wanted to see a few more houses later in the week. I gave him a list and he said we could look at two that Friday, one in Warwood and one in St. Clairsville. Meanwhile, we have had probably 3 or 4 groups come through our house, which even though that's a small number, I was surprised we had even that many. Someone came to look at it last Wednesday.


Thursday night, I had a dream that we bought the first house we planned to look at the next day. I had looked at SO many houses on all of the real estate websites in the past few weeks. This particular house didn't really interest me, except that it was in our price range and had the right number of bedrooms in a decent neighborhood. So, I was surprised it made an appearance in my subconscious.


Friday morning, a lot of stuff happened. We went to look at the house I had a dream about. It was built in 1920, it's pretty big, and it has been recently been flipped. Everything in the house is new. New kitchen, new bathroom, new paint, new carpet, new windows, new furnace, new air conditioner, new water heater. There are a couple of drawbacks. There is not a single appliance in the house. While the majority of the house has either a caramel color carpeting or ceramic tile, the living room has bright blue carpet... The most important thing was that Clint and I both really liked it. We have looked at 8 houses total now, and that was the first time where we were completely on the same page.


Moving along, we go to look at a second house in St. Clairsville that was built in 1995. On paper, it should have been the better house, but we kept thinking about the first house in Warwood. We started talking hypothetically about the profit we will make from the sale of our house to be the down payment on a new house. (Not new of course, but new for us...) Our realtor, after having spent at least an hour with us, comes out of nowhere and says, "Well, that's something we will need to think about, because you have an offer." WHAT? The house had only been on the market for 23 days. We were thinking it would take at least six months to sell. I was talking about what it would be like to spend another winter in this apartment, and the freaking house gets an offer after Twenty. Three. Days.


He low-balled us, of course, but we countered back, and the next morning he accepted our counter. We are moving out of this house on September 24. (If all goes as planned, and please pray that it does.)


So... now what?


We tell Bob we want to look at more houses. We looked at three more on Monday and hated every single one of them. They were overpriced, they were old and outdated, they were remodeled poorly... they were... weird....


Meanwhile, in conversation, we start referring to the house in Warwood as "The House." We went to look at it again. And again with my mom and our handy man.


This morning, on the third visit, we take our handy man and tell him everything we want to change. Get everyone's opinion.


We made an offer.


Now, we are waiting. We fully expect them to counter. How much will they counter? Will they accept our terms? Will they cover our closing costs? Let's hope. The whole process makes me giddy and nauseous all at the same time. I'm not sleeping... like at all...


Please keep us in your prayers and cross your fingers for us. I'm hoping to hear back from the seller this evening.


We really want this:

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

This pretty much made my week.

Over a breakfast of muffins and fruit this morning, Owey decides he is going to hide behind his plate. We play along. He giggles for a solid 15 minutes. You can hear him giggling behind the plate. It was an awesome mommy-moment.

video

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Mother of three, for three days only.

We finally planned a trip to Columbus that involved bringing additional children with us home to Wheeling. We went up on Tuesday and brought Andrew and Allie back home with us for three nights.



They were jam-packed days, and not everything went according to plan, but we still had an awesome time.



Early morning piano shenanigans.

Three hot kids on a chair.



Approximately 10 minutes after arriving back in Wheeling, our power goes out as I am making grilled cheese sandwiches for all the kids. I think it's important to note that it was exactly 96 degrees that day. The kids were uncomfortable. We went and rented a movie, and by the time we came home, the power was back on and we enjoyed a dinner of chicken enchiladas.


What I did not realize, was that something happened to the refrigerator during the power outage. The light was still on, the freezer was still cold, but by Thursday morning, the fridge was getting less cold than it should have been. I was thinking it may have had something to do with the excessive heat.


So, Thursday we packed up Andrew and Allie (Grandma stayed with Owen at our house) and went to Sandcastle. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures while at Sandcastle, because my phone was stored in a locker while we ran around the waterpark.


We first hit up the wave pool (always a favorite). The kids weren't sure what to expect, but once the waves started churning, and the kids started getting bounced around, we knew they were having an awesome time. Then Clint and I both got a double innertube to go down the Blue Tubalooba with each of the kids, the most awesome water slide in the history of water slides. After going down it once the kids immediate screamed, "Let's do that again!!!!!" The lazy river was not quite as big a hit, so we went back to the wave pool before lunch.


After lunch, Allie and I went to the kids' pool, which even as an adult, was awesome. I can't wait until Owen gets a little bigger so he can enjoy that. After the little pool, we tried to see if Allie could go down some slides in a single tube. Thankfully she was tall enough, so we each went down two more slides side by side. She was having a blast. Meanwhile, Andrew and Clint were going down the terrifying really tall slides. We met back up to go in the wave pool one more time before heading home.


We left Sandcastle at 5:30, and didn't reach the Fort Pitt Tunnel until 6:45... It's approximately 10 miles, maybe less. There was so much traffic. It was disastrous. The kids were exhausted and both took a nap in the car, but woke up before we even left Pittsburgh.


Below is Allie passed out in the car on the way home from Sandcastle.





When we got home, my mom says, "Kara, I don't think your fridge is keeping things cold..." The refrigerator that I bought 2.5 years ago when we first moved into our apartment is now ruined. Friday morning brought stress and refrigerator estimates. One company told me it would cost between $200-400 to fix it. Another company was going to charge me $80 just to come look at it, and they couldn't come look at it until the 20th (I called on the 9th)...
New refrigerator it is! I got a pretty sweet deal on a Whirpool brand (bottom freezer) refrigerator that was half off!!!! It was a good day to buy a fridge.
The rest of Friday was spent at the park, Andrew and Clint hitting up Cabela's, and Allie, Owen and me going shopping at Target where Allie got some cute new outfits and I got some new sunglasses to replace the ones broken at Sandcastle. (I cannot be without sunglasses on sunny days.)


Owey was also a fan of the shades.



Owey and his best friend (substitute polar bear), Andrew.


If the polar bear is not near, and Andrew is, Owey is happy! I have an almost identical shot of these two from our trip to the Columbus zoo.



The night in Columbus consisted of Bananagrams with my gutter-brained husband, Scott and Cristie, and two defunct dictionaries that couldn't keep up with my vocabulary. Thank God for Scott's iPhone. Good times, friends.


I just want to say how adorable Allie is with all her little dresses. I have known this little lady since she was nine days old, and in the past five years, I don't remember ever seeing her wear anything other than dresses (except for pajamas). Cristie says it doesn't happen too often.



Allie is very good at making Owey giggle.


Especially when she acts like she is biting his hands. The expression on Owen's face is his deliriously happy face.



And Allie can fly!



Action shot of Allie~!


Bubbles! Allie was blowing bubbles and Owey was chasing them.


Down the tubes.


Saturday morning, the entire Kimmins fam had breakfast in the Amie abode. I don't do it very often, but when there is a special occasion, I love to cook up a big breakfast. Cristie always prepares a huge breakfast for us the last day of our visits to Columbus, so I thought it only fair I return the favor. It was awesome having them all over! I'm looking forward to having a house with more livable areas so that I can do more entertaining (without having people climb three flights of stairs)... I'm pretty sure Owey was very sad to see his friends leave, and I'm sure he is looking forward to another visit soon.
Back to the fridge drama. Because it was considered an "emergency fridge," they did not give me a time window on when the fridge was going to be delivered, only that it would be Saturday. Clint went and got a few breakfast essentials this morning, and more ice. I had everything from the fridge within a cooler and a huge freezer bag.
I figured it would be delivered midday. Nope.
At 4:00pm, I called Lowes to find out where the fridge was. They took my number and told me they would call me back. At 6:00pm, with no word from Lowes, I called back. This new girl I talked to contacted the driver while on the phone with me, only to find out that they were "backed up" but it would definitely be today. I was upset. By this point, all the ice had melted from everywhere, and everything in the cooler and freezer bag was ruined. I told them I had kids in my house and needed to be able to have essential food items. I had planned on going shopping as soon as the fridge was delivered to replace everything that was ruined. Luckily, I stored all of our meat from the freezer with our upstairs neighbor, who was very accommodating, even though she is vegan!!! I relayed this to the girl on the phone, who promptly transferred me to a manager.
I'm kind of surprised at this. I wasn't really angry, I just wanted to know when the damn fridge was going to be delivered. I am not one to hold back a complaint at places like restaurants and retail stores. I worked as a waitress and a sales associate before. I know the deal. Customer's are paying you for a service, and if that service is not delivered as expected, the customer should benefit. But in this case, I wasn't even that mad when on the phone. Clint said it sounded like I was going to cry, but I think I was just really tired. This phone call resulted in the darling manager from Lowes leaving $15o dollars at the customer service desk for me to replace my groceries. I'm still ticked that I had to replace a 2.5 year old fridge, but that was a huge help, especially with Clint being laid off and all that. Thanks Ashley the manager!
The fridge was finally in place in my kitchen at 8:15pm.
After the crazy week I have had, I made some plans with my dear Natalie for sushi and secret-spilling. The sweet-potato rolls were sweet-ass. After sushi-fest, I hightailed it to the grocery store to replace all my perishables, courtesy of Lowes.
Tonight, the house is quiet after three days of being a family of five. While I know our family will likely only ever be a family of four, having Andrew and Allie with us made me look forward to giving Owen a sibling in a few years. He was clearly sad when he woke up from his nap and realized that the big kids were not there anymore.
Kids are awesome. One of Clint's highlights from the week: Listening to Andrew and Allie giggle while watching "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs." It was infectious. Love it.